Friday, 20 February 2015

Javanese as Wong Jowo in Suriname Past and Present

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The First Colony of Javanese in Suriname

Javanese as Wong Jowo in Suriname Past and Present, -Javanese Tribe as Wong Jowo, one of large tribe in this world after Hanzi tribe in China and around the world. The huge area of Java is in Indonesia, some others are in Suriname, Caledonia, Singapore Malaysia, and Nederland. The popular Javanese or Wong Jowo abroad is in Suriname because there are almost 15% of the people.

Javanese Suriname have encountered various obstacles in their efforts to preserve the Javanese language and culture but there is a strong curiosity to know about Javanese ethics, philosophy of life and thoughts. Notwithstanding this necessity, there is little contact between Indonesians and Suriname. The desire to be close to Javanese way of life is evidenced by the popularity of imported goods from Indonesia such peci, blangkon, stagen, kain of cloth and cigarettes. Beside that cassette tapes with songs in the Javanese language is popular. The great majority of vendors at the Sunday market in northern Paramaribo is Javanese.

Javanese Girls in Suriname Wearing Javanese Costume
Javanese Surinamese are an ethnic group of Javanese tribe in Suriname. They came at the end of 19thcentury, whose first colony were migrated by the Dutch colonizers. The first Javanese arrived in Paramaribo On August 9, 1890 Netherlands Trading Society as the owner of Mariƫnburg plantation company in Suriname, undertook Javanese contract workers from the Dutch East Indies the name of Indonesia at that time.

The next migration was done in smaller groups from the Dutch East Indies to Netherlands and migrated to Suriname at that time. The transport of Javanese immigrants continued until 1914  in two stages through Amsterdam except in 894 there was no migration. The Javanese workers came from some villages in Central and East Java departure from Batavia, Semarang and Tanjung Priok. The recruited workers inspected and registered before signed their contract; all the workers brought their families to Suriname.

The immigrants were placed to work on the plantations except the migration group in 1904. There
The First Javanese Migration Monument
were 77 Javanese were recruited to work at the Colonial Railways and some of them worked at the Suriname Bauxite Company in Moengo it was started from World War I Javanese also of World War ended. Started the end of 19th Century The Javanese live in Suriname until today but some of the immigrants feel not comfortable to live in Surinam than there was migration back to Indonesia.

One migration back of Javanese from surinam to Indonesia in 1953 when a large group of 300 families around 1,200 people went back using the ship Lengkuas of the Royal Rotterdam Lloyd led by Salikin Hardjo. The immigrants were intended to live in Java or Lampung, but their request was not approved by the Indonesian government. Then the journey is continued to West Sumatra. They built new area in Tongass in Pasaman regency, north of Padang,Minangkabau tribe. Although most of the Javanese were Christian and marriages with the mainly Muslim Minangkabau were common. The generation is said to feel more Indonesian than Surinamese, but still have contacts with family and friends in Suriname and the Netherlands which sometimes traveling to those countries. 
Jaran Kepang Dance still popular in Suriname
recover the land and building new houses. The immigrants integrated with the

Suriname is in South America but considered as a Caribbean country. The total area is 63,250 square miles (163,820 square kilometers). The majority of the inhabitants live in the narrow coastal zone. More than 90 percent of the national territory is covered by rain forest. Suriname is a tropical country with alternating dry and rainy seasons. 

Suriname Country is a multicultural,  multiethnic  multilingual, and multireligious without a true national culture. The population of Suriname is a mixture of different ethnic groups. Started from East Indian as the biggest population around 27% of the population and African as the second with 37% of the population. Javanese stands as the third of the population rank in Suriname around 14% and the next population rank are Amerindians, Chinese, European, and Brazilians, many of them gold miners living in Suriname arrived during the past several years. 


Central and South America
South America
People Name General
Javanese, Caribbean
People Name in Country
Javanese, Caribbean
Population in Suriname
World Population


  1. Very interesting. I hope to visit Suriname one day.